Tales from the Old Cemetery

November & December 2017

On a Saturday morning I often find myself with time to kill while Commando is running parkrun. Sometimes I hang around chatting to the other spectators, sometimes I go off to get a coffee but, most often, I just wander around the Old Cemetery on Southampton Common. It’s good to leave the hubbub of parkrun behind and find a few peaceful moments wandering amongst the graves. The morning light and the changing of the seasons, along with the inscriptions on the stones, make it an interesting exercise. Sometimes I take a photo or two, sometimes my phone stays in my pocket. Usually there are not enough photos to warrant a blog post but I thought I’d gather a few together and share them with you.  Continue reading Tales from the Old Cemetery

Tales from the photo archive Spring

The first of my spring photos come from a walk around the City Centre parks on 7 March. I was running errands so didn’t have too much time to look around. The trees were still bare but The crocuses were flowering, a sure sign spring was in the air. Continue reading Tales from the photo archive Spring

Frost on the Common and sun on the walls

25 November 2017

Today there was a cold and frosty start as we crunched our way across a frozen Common to parkrun. The sparkling grass and the flaming trees under a brilliant blue sky were all very pretty but I don’t mind admitting my teeth were chattering as I waited around for the run to start. The blue sky was a definite bonus for the adventure I had planned later in the morning though.  Continue reading Frost on the Common and sun on the walls

The oldest graves

13 June 2017

There are three large gates entering Southampton Old Cemetery, probably designed to be used by carriages, along with several smaller gates like the one we’d used earlier. One is on Hill Lane, one near Cemetery Lake and one on Cemetery Road. We were now standing in front of the main gate on Cemetery Road. This is the oldest part of the cemetery with the most elaborate graves. We still had a little time before we had to meet Commando so we went inside. Continue reading The oldest graves

A small disaster on the Common and some graffiti – first published 5 September 2014

In early September 2014 I’d revisited my past and had a pleasant walk through the parks. Now I was on my way to the Common. As I was passing the old Mad House building a van passed me with its stereo blaring. I often wonder about the hearing of people who play their music so loudly in their vehicles but this time they were playing one of my favourite songs, Kevin Lyttle’s Turn Me On. This was one of those tunes we’d put on the CD player when the marketing team were in the penthouse at Dream Factory. Sometimes we’d even get up and dance around a bit. Hearing this reminded me I had my iPod in my pocket. Once upon a time I almost always had my iPod on when I was walking but lately I’ve hardly used it. I got it out, found the song and set it to shuffle. Continue reading A small disaster on the Common and some graffiti – first published 5 September 2014

More tales from the Old Cemetery

8 April 2017

Even if you’re not a runner there are some advantages to getting up early on a Saturday morning for parkrun. For me this usually means a walk of some kind while Commando is running and, for the second week in a row my feet took me to the Old Cemetery on the Common. At this pont you might be thinking two Saturday mornings walking round a cemetery sounds borderline obsessive. Maybe you’d be right but there was so much still to see I couldn’t resist. This time I took the fancy pants camera with me. Continue reading More tales from the Old Cemetery

The graveyard shift – comedy, tragedy and shipwrecks

1 April 2017

On Saturday mornings you can usually find me at parkrun. If I feel like a brisk walk I march round the 5k course, rarely coming last unless I’m actually walking with the tail runner to keep her company. Two laps of the Common is a touch boring, so I often just go for a wander and come back to cheer once people begin to finish. Occasionally I wander down to London Road or to Highfield campus to grab a coffee, sometimes I poke about on the Common. Today I decided to visit the Old Cemetery, looking for signs of spring and interesting stories.  Continue reading The graveyard shift – comedy, tragedy and shipwrecks

Fallen trees and fallen gravestones – first published 14 January 2014


My visit to the Common in mid January 2014 was mainly to take a look at the fallen trees Commando had told me about. After walking for more than four miles, the only fallen trees I’d seen were old and rotten. Still, it was a lovely day and I’d seen swans on the lake so I wasn’t complaining. Back then my real aim was finding things to make me smile. Continue reading Fallen trees and fallen gravestones – first published 14 January 2014

Robin redbreast on the Common


8 December 2015

Yet again there had been rain and there’d been a fair bit of sitting about talking about Katie and worrying how Maggie and Alan were coping. Messages and cards had been sent. What there hadn’t been was walking, apart from up the hill and back again trying to beat the showers. Commando was going slightly stir crazy, missing his runs so, when the rain eased up in the late afternoon, he decided to go for a run on the Common and asked if I wanted to come along for a short walk. Continue reading Robin redbreast on the Common

Jet lag, graves and disappointment


27 October 2015

They say, as far as jet lag is concerned, east is a beast. This, it turns out, is true. Flying into the states and gaining five hours wasn’t too bad at all. After a couple of days waking up early we had it nailed. Flying back and losing those pesky hours again was a whole different matter. Perhaps if the clocks hadn’t gone back the weekend after we got home I’d have coped better. My poor body didn’t know whether it was coming or going, especially when it came to when to eat. This resulted in a full five days of lazing about feeling terminally confused and waking up in the middle of the night feeling hungry. Needless to say, apart from unpacking and laundry, very little got done. Continue reading Jet lag, graves and disappointment